Remember, the sins of some people are obvious, leading them to certain judgment. But there are others whose sins will not be revealed until later. In the same way, the good deeds of some people are obvious. And the good deeds done in secret will someday come to light. 1Timothy 5:24-25
So many things have been happening in the ‘United’ States over the past few months that have caused havoc in the hearts of everyone – riots in Baltimore, terrorism in the south, decisions made about the legalities of marriage, just to name a few.
In the newspapers, radio, TV, and the internet, opinions are being lobbed by both sides of the ‘battle’. All knowing they are ‘right’, everyone talking, no one listening… Now, obviously that is a grand generalization. I’ve seen a few observations that are ‘spoken’ in love; and there are hundreds of thousands who haven’t made their opinions public. But overall, venturing onto Facebook is akin to a combat encounter.
I have no intention of getting ‘political’ nor am I going to share my own views…that’s for another time, preferably over a hot cup of coffee, sitting on a comfy sofa, in a face-to-face conversation. But, all of these matters have really got me thinking about where I stand.
I stand before God, ALL of my sins laid bare before His all-knowing, all-seeing eyes. When I look at myself honestly, at the content of my own heart, I don’t only see the purity that is given to me though Christ’s gift of grace and mercy through the cross. I also see the sins that are covered by His blood.
My sins aren’t blatant – I haven’t physically murdered anyone, I haven’t robbed a store, I haven’t broken any laws (unless you count going 5 or so miles over the speed limit or forgetting to use my turn signal every once in a while)…
My sins are hidden (well, at least they were). They are sins of the heart – bad attitudes, anger, resentment, bitterness, envy, jealousy, judgement, and I could go on and on. You may never see any of those faults in me because I am pretty good at covering it up, at putting on a social mask that makes me ‘look’ okay to the average Jane (or maybe I’m just deluding myself and you can really spot them a mile away…).
The reality is that I sin; no matter how hard I try not to, no matter how much I strive to be like Jesus, my human nature rears her nasty head periodically (okay, more like 100 times a day).
As I’ve been walking with God, I have been learning that it is less about my sin, and more about what I do with my sin. If I try to ignore my sin and sweep it under a proverbial rug, it accumulates and eventually reveals itself, whether in an argument or a bad choice, usually when I am exhausted or hangry (which happens more often than I wish, taking care of 3 littles). But, when I face that sin head on, being purposeful to confess it and ask for forgiveness, it can no longer control me and I can no longer use it to try to control and manipulate others. My own repentance, as well as forgiveness opens the doors of my heart to be able to give and receive love.
And the truth is: “All we need is LOVE”!
Yesappa, Thank you for loving me and helping me love others – my friends and my perceived enemies. Help my eyes be more and more open to seeing the sins of my heart so I can turn to you for forgiveness, restoration, and freedom. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Blessings – Julie, Sholavandan, India (written in the U.S.A.)
Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.